Tuesday, 12 March 2013

Odisha government’s move to shift women weightlifters’ hostel in Berhampur opposed

The proposed shifting of sports hostel for girls of weightlifting from Berhampur to Bhubaneswar has been opposed by Ganjam District Sports Lovers’ Association (GDSLA).
Cradle of weightlifting
Berhampur is considered cradle of weightlifting especially women weightlifting in the State. It has produced several national-level women weightlifters.
Speaking during a press meet called up in the city on Monday, GDSLA president Kishor Patra said that the sports hostel or training centre for girls interested in weightlifting was opened on the campus of Berhampur stadium in July 2012. “Efforts of Berhampur MLA R.C.C. Patnaik and promise of Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik during felicitation ceremony of Commonwealth Games gold medal winner K. Ravi Kumar had led to establishment of the centre,” said Mr. Patra. Twelve girls were staying in this weightlifting sports hostel for girls. Former weightlifter and member of GDSLA Kaviraj Gouda said it was an irony that the centre was being shifted to Bhubaneswar while the government claimed that every effort was being made for promotion of weightlifting in the city. It may be noted that Berhampur has produced several international weightlifters, including two Arjun award winners -- Ravi Kumar and Bijay Kumar Satpathy. A sports hostel for boys of weightlifting continues on Berhampur stadium campus.
Academy promised
As per the sports lovers, the State government has announced to promote weightlifting in the region through proposal for establishment of a weightlifting academy at Gopalpur. A sum of Rs. 2 crore was sanctioned for the purpose, Mr. Gouda said. “If there was lack of infrastructure at Berhampur stadum, the authorities could have improved infrastructure rather than shifting the sports hostel for women weightlifters from the city,” Mr Patra said.
Public awareness
To create public awareness about this issue, the GDSLA has decided to hold a rally  in the city. It will also send a memorandum to the State government regarding the matter on that day. Source: The Hindu

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